Hello, and Happy New Gregorian Year to those who celebrate!
It’s still raining. Storm Frank is still interfering with my sleep and the layout of my garden (the neighbours are returning the errant plant pots). Three electrical items decided to die on the same day, but thankfully the sales are on so they were seriously upgraded. It’s quite interesting to have a flat TV. Thankfully it still has a scart socket in the back for my retro console urges.
This month, I am a guest blogger with Clare London for her birthday:
My post is about being generous with my time, skills and items, having successfully completed my reverse advent calendar. The comments were very nice. Most people are generous when a need arises, but they themselves may take up a challenge to look for opportunities to be generous in future.
Right now, the space that was occupied with unwanted Christmas presents is now vacant, thanks to a trip to a charity shop. (“Unwanted Christmas presents” is my current favourite search on ebay, and it’s filled with fitness/weight loss DVDs, and gender and age stereotyped unWRAPPED presents in pink and blue paper.) Christmas and the Winter Solstice isn’t about materialism for me. It’s about presence, not presents. I had two Christmas’ this year, to make sure everyone had someone – not someTHING. The laughter is what I’ll remember, and the unique expression of decorations. Not the stuff that’s probably in someone else’s possession by now.
I loathe the consumerism marketing that has convinced people we need to buy things, that people have to buy my loyalty with physical gifts in order for us to keep knowing each other. Really, just no. It is highly unlikely our friendship started because you bumped into me on my birthday and handed me a gift I adored.
My cat slept on me New Year’s Day. She’s never brought me anything, but that moment will stay with me and sustain me with happy thoughts.
1. I have money. If I want something, I can get it myself.*
2. Waiting for people to do things I’m perfectly capable of doing for myself is unhealthy dependence
3. Holding onto things for an arbitrary day (birthday or Christmas, for example) rather than immediately doing them is stalling the enjoyment of life.
An example of this, a friend made a Christmas list in October that included deep roasting tins for the oven. They were capable of buying them at that time. But they didn’t, in case someone brought it and they ended up with a duplicate. It was handed to them Boxing Day, after dinner had overspilled in the oven from the shallow tin the day before. If they had brought it right away, they wouldn’t have this worry or this delay, or the mess to clean up.
Another example – my parents had a champagne bottle for their 25th wedding anniversary, that they planned on saving until their 30th, 40th… 50th. My Dad died after their 45th wedding anniversary. I did taste it on their 50th anniversary, and it had gone off.
Please, don’t wait for other people to treat you to things you need or wish to experience. Do it now. Once you have it, or have done it, you’ll feel fabulous at the flowing energy, and have another lovely adventure to bring into your life, on top of the memory you already have. Otherwise you’ll die missing out on things you kept pushing back, and the experience will be bitter.
This year, if you have one resolution, don’t buy presents for people. Be with them as often as you enjoy, take photographs and collect memories, not merchandise. Buy yourself what you want as soon as you want it, and savour it fully.
How have I started this? Butter in my coffee. Yes, really. We always buy too much brandy butter at Christmas, and it 1) uses it so it’s not wasted, 2) tastes amazing 3) fattens me up for Winter, whenever that feels like starting.
*Unless you want to buy me a house or a motorbike, which can happen when I manifest abundance. In the meantime…